Rumors circulating about Google showing interest in offering VOIP (voice over Internet protocol). Tom Keating has reported that Google has been looking to hire people with "dark fiber" experience, and he muses on the possibilities.
Google already has tons of bandwidth at its disposal. Imagine if they
decide to get into the VoIP biz? Google has a loyal, almost fanatical
following that dwarf’s even (dare I say?) Apple’s fandom. If Google
plays its cards right it could get into the VoIP business and offer
some really creative applications.
James Seng points to Google’s denials, and mentions Newsweek’s new article on VoIP and Vonage: "Hi! The Net Is Calling." Personally, I can say that I am a fan of Skype, which I use to keep in touch with relatives across the Pacific. (I remember once seeing a graphic that showed Taiwan second only to the United States in number of users.) Sometimes, the voice quality is unreliable (Skype relies on peer to peer–P2P–technology, and I occasionally get dropped calls), but you cannot beat the price, and I also like the way that I can IM (instant message) specific (lengthier) URLs to people so that I can surf web sites together with them.